A Prototype Aid for Evaluating Alternative Courses of Action for Tactical Engagement
Final technical rept.
DECISIONS AND DESIGNS INC MCLEAN VA
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This technical report describes a decision-aiding technique developed to assist division-level commanders and their staffs in choosing among alternative courses of action for tactical engagement. By employing principles of multi-attribute utility assessment methodology, a two-level model consisting of five general categories terrain, own forces, enemy forces, weather, and risk and twenty-four factors was developed and implemented on an IBM 5100 computer. In applying the decision aid, the user is required to score each of the alternative courses of action on each factor and to assign a weight indicating the importance of each factor in discriminating among the alternatives. A simple algorithm is used to calculate a weighted score for each course of action, the highest score being an indication of the preferred course of action. A sensitvity analysis provides a measure of the robustness of the scores and weights assigned by the user. The aid was designed to provide 1 A checklist of the salient factors that need to be considered in choosing among alternative courses of action, thus at least inviting detailed consideration of the complete spectrum of factors that bear on tactical choice. 2 A logical method for integrating subjective elemental assessments into an indication of choice. 3 A means of well-focused communication about the decision problem at hand, by making the decision problem and value structure explicit and by requiring judgments in quantitative rather than qualitative terms.
- Military Operations, Strategy and Tactics